Parker’s next hire: the odds

With the recent announcement from Pierre-Antoine Rovani that he will be leaving Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate (discussed here), speculation is running wild on a replacement. We make the odds:

Hugh Johnson 10,000:1
Jancis Robinson (FT) 5,000:1
Per-Henrik Mansson (freelance) 4,000:1
James Halliday 999:1
Matt Kramer (WS) 900:1
Eric Asimov (NYT) 700:1
Dorothy Gaiter (WSJ) 500:1
Robin Garr (WLP) 400:1
Bobby Kacher (importer) 300:1
Jamie Goode (Wine Science) 300:1
Jeff Leve (eRP) 200:1
Daniel Johnnes (restaurant Daniel) 100:1
Dan Berger (Vintage Experiences) 50:1
Lyle Fass (Crush) 25:1
Tim Atkin (The Observer) 20:1
Gregory Walter (Pinot Report) 18:1
Alan Meadows (Burghound) 14:1
Antonio Galloni (Piedmont Report) 13:1
Stephen Tanzer (IWC) 10:1
Michel Bettane (Revue du Vin de France) 9:1
Andrew Jefford (freelance) 5:2

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8 Responses to “Parker’s next hire: the odds”

  1. You left out:

    Me (Alex Manoni) 6,000,000:1

  2. I don’t think that Parker will choose any current wine journalist or critics like Steve Tanzer (although some sort of merger is, I guess, possible). The problem is that the value is in his palate and thus can’t be easily transfered to someone else. My guess is he will choose a couple of unknowns and try to groom them so he can eventually retire and sell the business to someone else.

  3. Tim-

    Thanks for your comment–from the beach!

    I agree that the optimal approach from a business perspective would be to get someone young–but that was the plan with Rovani after all.

    So maybe a “merger”–or acquisition–with another pub? Gives the cred, shows the dedication and he knows they won’t bolt. It would be a question of personalities first and foremost though.

    That’s why someone (youngish) and repsected from the trade could make an interesting choice. The only question is could he or she write with the verve of RP? Or would he or she come to feel the need to have “the adrenaline rush of making ‘the deal'” as Rovani put it about missing the big business deal?

    Tough decisions! It will be interesting to see. He probably will take his time since the Thomases hiring was a flop.


  4. Or perhaps Elin McCoy was correct that there will never be someone like RP, so when he retires there will be no succession after all? If this plays out, there will be a splintering in the wine world that will be for the best IMHO. We are already seeing this somewhat with wine blogging…

    BTW, weather here on the beach is very nice. So is the free wifi 😉


  5. Free wi fi–I’m so jealous! (but maybe your family wants you to go play frisbee and get out from behind your laptop!)

    I do agree that the inexorable shift is toward greater diversity in wine commentary and criticism. But more on that later…For Parker, I think the temptation for a charismatic leader is always to keep the regime going–but always hard to find a suitable replacement.

    Enjoy the umbrella drinks!

  6. How about Brian Freedman?

  7. Maybe it will be a wine blogger….

  8. Kevin Zraly?


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